Work on the next phase of the restoration of historic Doncaster Minster is due to get under way today.
Specialist teams will start work to repair crumbling stonework, revamp stained glass windows, and carry out interior improvements during a 20-week programme of refurbishment.
The work will focus on the north transept which has suffered problems from water damage, with stonemasons, lime plasterers and specialist glazers all on site to carry out the repairs.
The roof of the transept will be replaced and stonework cleaned up with windows also being delicately cared for during the programme of works.
Canon Paul Shackerley, vicar of Doncaster, said: “It is exciting to be moving on with this essential work to the fabric of Doncaster Minster.
“Not only will it address the effects of the historic water ingress but it will prevent further damage to the stonework.
“We will also see improvements to the condition of one of our biggest and most impressive stained glass windows.
“We are now able to turn our attentions to the next phase of urgent works which centre on the Minster tower.
“These improvements are part of our long-term aim to restore and improve Doncaster Minster as the main civic Church of England church for Doncaster and a key heritage site for the town and surrounding area.”
The funding for the work has been picked up by a number of grants, including English Heritage, the Heritage Lottery Fund, Wolfson Foundation, WREN, The Sir John Priestman Charity Trust, Garfield Weston Foundation and the Tanner Trust as well as private donors.
The work will be carried out by specialist architects Rodney Melville and Norman and Underwood, a building contractors specialising in conservation projects.
There will also be opportunities for members of the public to attend talks at the Minster, hosted by the craftspeople who will be delivering the work, to hear about the work and the crafts carried out during the restoration project.
Each talk and opportunity will be advertised closer to the time.
More details are available at www.doncasterminster.org or on 01302 323 748.
A glittering jewel in Doncaster
Doncaster Minster, formerly St George’s Church, is one of the town’s most architecturally important buildings.
It was built by architect Sir George Gilbert Scott in 1858 at a cost of £43,126 4s 5d, and replaced a 12th-century Norman building that burnt down on the last day of February 1853.
It was described by Sir John Betjeman as ‘Victorian Gothic at its very best’. It was given minster status by the Bishop of Sheffield on June 17, 2004.
Among its treasures are a clock by Dent - the designer of the Palace of Westminster Clock, more usually known as Big Ben - and a spectacular five manual organ by the renowned German organ builder Edmund Schulze, 1824–1877.